Republican senator says Roy Moore shouldn’t undergo ‘trial by newspaper’

 Republican senator says Roy Moore shouldn’t undergo ‘trial by newspaper’
© Greg Nash

Sen. Tom CottonThomas (Tom) Bryant CottonSenate moving ahead with border bill, despite Trump Hillicon Valley: New FTC chief eyes shake up of tech regulation | Lawmakers target Google, Huawei partnership | Microsoft employees voice anger over ICE contract Lawmakers urge Google to drop partnership with Chinese phone maker Huawei MORE (R-Ark.) on Thursday blasted the notion of "trial by newspaper" for individuals facing allegations of sexual misconduct, saying that such cases should be decided on their merits.

But he also said that women should feel that they are able to safely and fairly report sexual harassment and assault, adding that such behavior has "no place in our society or in the workplace."

"I think it's important that any woman feels that she can make a complaint if she's been subjected to sexual harassment or sexual assault, that have no place in our society or in the workplace," he told The Associated Press in an interview streamed on Facebook Live.

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"Each case has to be evaluated on the merits of course," he added. "We shouldn't have trial by newspaper."

Cotton's comments came as a number of powerful men in politics, media, entertainment and beyond face allegations of sexual misconduct — behavior that, in some cases, spanned years or even decades.

Among those who have faced allegations in recent weeks is GOP Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore, who has been accused of sexual misconduct by multiple women. Moore has denied the allegations.

Cotton said Thursday that Moore's fate should ultimately be decided by Alabama voters.

"The people of Alabama are going to decide Roy Moore's fate," he said. "The people of Alabama are going to make that decision, just like the people of this country made their decision last year on Donald Trump."

President TrumpDonald John TrumpJimmy Fallon responds to Trump: I'll donate to pro-immigrant nonprofit in his name South Carolina GOP candidate expected to make full recovery after car accident Official: US to present North Korea with timeline, 'specific asks' MORE has also faced allegations of sexual impropriety from multiple women. He has denied those accusations. 

Earlier this week, Trump endorsed Moore and the Republican National Committee reinstated its support for the candidate, despite cutting ties with his campaign last month. The special election is set for Tuesday.